Why back of house lighting should not be overlooked

led lighting, office lighting

Any good hospitality business needs to deliver an enjoyable guest experience and create a great lasting impression, if they wish to attract and retain customers. Lighting plays a crucial role in helping restaurants, hotels, and bars to meet this goal, and through implementing good lighting design the overall guest experience can be increased significantly. Conversely, poor lighting can have the opposite effect.

In fact, in a survey we conducted last year we found that 80% of people who had visited a hospitality venue such as a restaurant, bar, hotel, pub or café found the lighting to be below par, with nine out of ten respondents going as far to say that bad lighting would be enough to put them off revisiting a venue in the future.

While lighting is a critical component in front of house areas, it is equally important in back of house spaces such as kitchens, corridors, maintenance rooms, laundries, offices, and so on. Having good lighting in these areas can dramatically improve the wellbeing and mood of staff, not to mention the health and safety of anyone who ventures into these areas.

Back of house lighting tips

To ensure the lighting is adequate in back of house areas, consider these following tips.

  • Direct and reflected glare from bright bulbs can negatively impact the visual comfort and safety of employees. Ideally, seek a balance of indirect or semi-indirect light reflected from the ceiling, along with direct task lighting positioned above work surfaces.
  • In low traffic areas such as storage rooms, laundries, service corridors, and stairwells, opt for motion sensored illumination to reduce energy expenditure.
  • Moisture proof bulbs should be used in high moisture spaces such as laundries or dishwashing areas as well as food prep and cooking areas in order to allow for quick and easy sanitation from accumulated dirt and splashes.
  • High colour rendering light sources (for example LED bulbs) are usually best for food preparation tasks.
  • Long corridors can cause a disorientating or claustrophobic “tunnel effect” which can be minimized through the use of layered lighting on walls and ceilings, adding in artwork, ornaments, and planters along with accent lighting will ensure these spaces remain invigorating and visually interesting.
  • Consider adding recessed down lighting above room entrances.

The future is LED

LED bulbs are becoming an increasingly popular choice for businesses owners. This is mostly due to the fact that they are an energy efficient lighting source, using approximately 50-90% less electricity than traditional incandescent, halogen, and fluorescent bulbs, which can result in significant energy cost savings over time. Additionally, a quality LED bulb has an expected lifespan of 30,000–50,000 hours, however a typical incandescent will only burn for around 1,000 hours. With this longer life expectancy, LEDs require less maintenance, making them a cost effective lighting option for both back and front of house solutions.

Lighting is plays a fundamental role in any hospitality business, and back of house areas present an enormous opportunity for energy savings, due to the fact that lighting is often left on for long periods of time when these areas are not in use. Implementing energy efficient LED lighting along with motion sensors where applicable, and encouraging staff to switch off lights after use can lead to significantly reduced energy bills over time.

Contact us to speak with an expert about reducing your lighting bills.

Save money in the new year with new lights

led lighting, saving money

New year, new lights: How LEDs can save you money

As a business owner, saving money should be a constant priority, but establishing the best areas to cut costs without having a negative impact on business operations or employee happiness, is never easy. Cutting back on staff benefits, for example, may save money in the short term, but could make it harder to attract and retain the best talent in the future. Similarly, moving to a smaller premises is likely to bring the rent down, but might also make it harder to draw in new business.

The good news is businesses don’t have to make huge changes to save significant amounts of money – simply replacing the lighting can have a major impact on the bottom line. Lighting is such an everyday function but it’s efficiency is too often overlooked. Every day, staff arrive at work and flick the lights on, and the last person leaving at close of play switches them off again. Depending on the nature of your business, you may even leave the lights on constantly. But did you know that energy used by lights alone can make up approximately 20-50% of your electricity bill spend? This considered, converting your businesses lighting to LED bulbs can reap significant long-term savings.

The advantages of LED

  • Energy-efficient – The directional nature of LED light emission enables lower energy consumption and higher efficiency, resulting in up to 90% less energy consumption than incandescent lighting (including halogen) and 60% less than traditional fluorescent lighting.
  • Low maintenance – LED light bulbs typically have a lifespan of up to 50 times longer than traditional light bulbs. Therefore converting to LED has the potential to significantly reduce maintenance fees.
  • Cool temperature – LEDs are cool to the touch because the bulk of energy is used to provide light, rather than being wasted through heat. This makes LEDs a particularly useful within temperature-sensitive environments.
  • Resilient – LED bulbs are robust, resistant to shock and vibration, as well as able to perform reliably in cold temperatures.

By converting to LED lights, businesses are able to benefit not only from reduced power costs, less maintenance, and a reduced carbon footprint, but may also find employees to be happier and more productive – fluorescent lights are notorious for causing eye strain, but LED lights are more forgiving and eye-friendly due the fact they give off less UV radiation.

In businesses where lighting is kept on for long hours and bulb changes are frequent, an LED conversion can save many thousands of pounds per year. For example, a small business using a total of 111 halogen and fluorescent bulbs would use 109 Kwh of energy if left on permanently for 24 hours a day. Following conversion to LED, this energy usage would drastically drop by 85%, to just 16 Kwh, reducing running costs by more than £4,000. Furthermore, the increased lifespan offered by LED means that not only are running costs significantly reduced, but a further saving of circa £900 can be made over 4 years from reduced maintenance fees and replacement bulbs.

A full LED conversion can be achieved with very little disruption to your business – If you’d like free expert advice on converting your business’s lighting to LED, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.